Adolf Loos (10.12.1870 - 23.8.1933) is one of the most important and influential architects of the 20th century. In his architecture he tried to combine tradition and progress and opposed radical developments. His approach often appears contradictory and complex - therefore Adolf Loos remains misunderstood in many ways to this day and his work, which focuses on the interior, remains hidden.
In the anniversary year 2020 and also 2021, we want to make both known and hidden Loos buildings and interiors accessible to the public for the first time via guided tours. In addition to the guided tours, lectures, panel discussions, theme walks and excursions to the Czech Republic (Brno, Prague, Pilsen) are planned in cooperation with other institutions.
We wish you much pleasure with your personal Loos discoveries!
Ralf Bock & Timo Riess
Bezirkskulturförderung Innere Stadt & Hietzing
Wohnung Emil Löwenbach
Adolf Loos has furnished over 60 apartments in the course of his career. Interiors are an integral part of his work. For the industrialist Emil Löwenbach, Loos set up an entire floor of a corner house on the Vienna River, near the Urania. Loos had the sensitivity to respond to the characters of his clients and the ability to adapt his vocabulary to design elements and materials again and again. The dining room, living room and a small library are still well preserved today. Part of the approx. 500 square meter apartment was changed after the war damage, but the rooms nevertheless convey the upper middle class feeling of living in Vienna at the beginning of the 20th century.
A certainly worthwhile visit, where you can not only admire an exceptionally beautiful work by Loos, but also learn a lot about the bridge game. (Photo: Philippe Ruault)
Right next to the house planned by Loos on Michaelerplatz, the Stein family at Kohlmarkt 16 had a house built in the style of historicism with a massive facade. Despite the then violent criticism of the neighboring Looshaus, Loos designed the portal of their shop and its interior, as well as the office space in the mezzanine. Here we can also find the flower boxes on the facade above the business portal - an element that Loos previously used at the Steiner jewelry feather shop. Richard Stein, for whom Loos also set up his private apartment, was close friends with Loos, Kokoschka and Schönberg.
The Stein family still runs the Manz publishing house and preserves the architectural heritage designed by Loos. (Photo: Manfred Werner)
Wohnung Friedrich Boskovits II - Musiksammlung der Wienbibliothek - Loos-Räume
The Boskovits family moved in 1927 from Frankgasse 1 at the Votivkirche to a larger apartment at Bartensteingasse 9, in the immediate vicinity of the Vienna City Hall. Loos had already furnished her apartment on Frankgasse a few years earlier. They wanted to move the high-quality equipment to the new apartment. The entire dining room, including the wall cladding and sideboard, was adapted to the new premises. The Jewish industrialist Friedrich Boskovits lived in this spacious apartment together with his wife, their married daughter, as well as their husband and children. The history of the Boskovits family shows the close connection between the client and the architect and the appreciation of the apartment furnishings planned by Loos.
The apartment was "rediscovered" in the 1980s and restored in an exemplary manner. Today it houses the music collection of the Vienna Library and a detailed documentation of the history of the owner and apartment as well as the life and work of Adolf Loos.
This tour is supported by the Vienna Library and is offered free of charge. (Photo: Herta Hurnaus)
It was important to Loos to be well dressed. He had the best men's tailors in Vienna make tailor-made suits in the English style. Loos was happy to pay for the planning and furnishing of their business and studio space. At the end of the 19th century, the tailoring studios were mostly located in the mezzanine in downtown Vienna and could only be reached through the staircase. At the beginning of the 20th century, some tailors could afford small shops on the ground floor and connected them with their studios in the mezzanine.
Knize's shop and tailor's studio have been preserved in their original state and are still one of the best addresses for men's fashion in Vienna after 110 years. The Knize tailoring salon is a good example of Loos' timeless concepts and work.
Loos received this order from Gisela Steiner, Hugo Steiner's sister, whose husband had passed away early. Her son Fritz-Wolf Knize soon took over the management and opened branches in Prague and Paris, which Loos also designed. Knize also had his two apartments furnished by him. (Photo: Philippe Ruault)
In this work, Loos designed an extension for a music salon to an existing cottage house. He cleverly changed the floor plan and the existing rooms. Unremarkable from the outside, the interiors open up the skills of Loos and the preferences of its clients. Willibald Duschnitz was an industrialist, his wife Jenka a pianist. In private, Duschnitz was a passionate art collector and organ player. This work is rich in quotes from the history of construction, which impressively prove the design method of Loos - namely to develop the new from tradition. (Photo: Philippe Ruault)
Loos was committed to the settler movement and later became chief architect of the Vienna Settlement Office. He gave lectures on the settlement house and its garden and developed not only master plans for settlements, but also a patent for a settlement house that was as inexpensive and easy to build as possible. The small animal garden was very important to him; people should be able to take care of themselves at least in the barren years after the First World War. A well-preserved and recently renovated model house of the Heuberg estate, which was restored together with the Federal Monuments Office, can now be viewed. During the tour you will learn interesting facts about the Viennese settler movement and its 3-pillar model: personal contribution, self-sufficiency & cooperation. The visit is also worthwhile because of the unique view from the settlement over the city.
(Photo: Philippe Ruault)
Haus in der Werkbundsiedlung
The Werkbundsiedlung pursued other ideals than the settler movement, in which Loos was heavily involved. The houses of the Werkbundsiedlung only had very small lots and were presented as an individual piece by an architect. Loos found this petty-bourgeois and was not convinced of the concept of the Werkbundsiedlung. It is primarily thanks to Josef Frank and Loos student Heinrich Kulka that Loos participated in the project with two semi-detached houses. Loos showed that the room plan can also work in a small area and with a small construction volume. A model for contemporary multi-storey housing? Living in the room.
A recently completely renovated and largely restored original semi-detached house is open for inspection. (Photo: Michael Baumgartner | KiTO)
Haus am Michaelerplatz
The "scandal house" in Vienna at the beginning of the modern age opposite the new imperial palace. A harbinger of a new era, the start of modernism in architecture in the 20th century. However, like all Loos objects, the house on Michaelerplatz has two faces. One that appears modest on the outside, referring to the older buildings in its neighborhood. Inside, however, it shows its wealth: the spatial moods for the business of an exclusive tailoring studio are achieved through spatial references, lighting and material. Loos's early masterpiece in the heart of his beloved Vienna is the almost perfect implementation of his thesis of evolution in architecture. What is meant is the constant further development and improvement of architecture from the cultural tradition. We owe this building to the Goldman family, who, even during the violent protests and threats until completion, always stood behind Loos and strengthened his back. Leopold Goldman's family was deported and murdered under Nazi rule because of their Jewish origin. We owe the restoration of the original business premises in an elaborate and successful restoration to Burkhard Ruckschcio in cooperation with the Raiffeisenbank (1989 - 1991).
The tour of the rooms of the former men's tailor's salon Goldman & Salatsch shows the duality and connection between the facade and the interior. (Photo: Raiffeisen)
The first detached house that was designed by Loos!
Previously, Loos had only carried out residential and business facilities and renovations of existing residential buildings. The building has become famous for its various facades - facing the street or the garden. While the street facade shows a one-story house with a barrel roof, a three-story villa can be seen on the garden side. Here, too, Loos designed a flat roof for the first time because he was convinced by the new invention of the wooden cement roof. Inside, the route through the living floor is impressive. The spacious common room is divided into different areas, which could also be flexibly separated by curtains. The interiors show the influences of the English country house in the architecture of Loos. The client was industrialist Hugo Steiner and his wife, painter Lilly Steiner, née Hofmann.
The Steiner family was one of Loos' most important clients. Hugo Steiner and Karl Kraus were classmates. The Steiner family's house was a meeting place for Viennese cultural workers until they moved to Paris in 1927. (Photo: Philippe Ruault)
Wohnung Alfred Kraus
Until recently believed to be destroyed, this apartment was only known from the famous photo of the bay window in Heinrich Kulka's Loos monograph (Löcker Verlag). It is the latest rediscovery of a work by Loos. He set up this apartment in a corner house near the Belvedere for the banker Alfred Kraus, a brother of Karl Kraus. The former apartment is now divided into two units, the main room - a corner room of the apartment - has been restored in an exemplary manner and is now the meeting room of a law firm. This work shows Loos' deep roots in the Viennese architectural history of the Baroque, as well as his interest in Japanese culture. (Photo: Philippe Ruault)
Wohnung Valentin Rosenfeld
A rediscovery that we owe to the architect and Loos expert Burkhardt Ruckschcio, who discovered this conversion of Loos in the 1970s and restored and reconstructed it with the current owner in meticulous work.
An exciting object that shows how Loos can convert a house from the Biedermeier era into a Loos apartment with just a few interventions, thereby creating his typical room atmospheres. One can also study another practice of Loos in this work: The integration and reuse of an existing interior designed by Loos in another building (usually inspired by the original owner).
Eva Rosenfeld was a close friend of Anna Freud, daughter of Sigmund Freud, and from 1925 ran a small school in the garden of the estate. So a place with a lot of architecture and history!
Im August 1912 reicht Adolf Loos, jenseits der Bahnlinie die durch Hietzing führt, ein Wohnhaus für Helene Horner ein. Es ist eines der ersten Häuser in diesem Siedlungsgebiet am Fuße des Roten Berges, das zu dieser Zeit noch recht ländlich geprägt war.
Er setzte den Typ des „eingeschossigen“ Wohnhauses mit Tonnendach ein, welchen er schon zuvor beim Haus Steiner verwendet hatte. Das Haus wirkt zur Straße klein - eingeschossig mit Dach - verfügt im Inneren über drei Vollgeschosse und einen vollnutzbaren Dachboden. Loos entwirft einen annährend quadratischen Grundriss von ca. 10 x 10 m mit einer tragenden Stütze als Kamin im Zentrum des Hauses. Dazu nimmt Loos die Entwurfsansätze für seine Siedlungshäuser vorweg, die er ab 1921 umsetzt. So besitzt das Haus bereits einen Selbstversorgergarten, einen Stall, Fassadenbepflanzungen mit Spalierobst und einen „echten“ Wintergarten als Frühbeet für Züchtungen für Jungpflanzen, der durch eine Heizung frostfrei gehalten werden kann.
Ein Haus, das nach außen bescheiden wirkt und seine Qualitäten im Innenraum zeigt, auch wenn Loos hier nicht mit teuren Materialien im Inneren „prunkt“. (Foto: Thomas Ledl)
Idea & realisation LOOS2021: Ralf Bock and Timo Riess
The architect Ralf Bock has been researching and publishing on the work of Adolf Loos since 2001 and founded the Adolf Loos Society. Timo Riess is the founder of the Association of Architectural Heritage Austria, which is committed to opening up historical architecture in Austria under the motto "commit-grasp-preserve".
Arch. Ralf Bock
+43 699 19 20 54 03
DI Timo Riess, MPA
+43 664 850 4625
"Verborgenes von Adolf Loos entdecken" - WienTourismus
"Wie man ein Loos-Zimmer besucht, das nicht mehr da ist", Die Presse, 25.02.2020